UDUBS downs champions – again
UWC Football Club made their intentions of winning this year’s Varsity Football tournament clear when they beat two-time champions UP-Tuks 2-1 at home on Monday, 27 July 2015.
The victory at UWC Sports Stadium saw UDUBS maintaining their third position in the log standings, level with the top two teams with four points. Teams finishing in the top four after the round-robin games of the eight-team mini league will qualify for the semi-finals.
In front of the ever cheering crowd on a cold evening, it was a matter of history repeating itself as UWC overcame Tuks in the same fashion as last year: coming from a one goal down to win the game in the second half.
The home side started slow, giving away possession cheaply and struggling to operate as a team. Although UDUBS managed a couple of shots on and off target, the Tuks were more threatening and their left-footed star midfielder Jeremiah Nkwana silenced the home crowd with a stunning free-kick from outside the box in the 26th minute.
The visitors could have gone to the break with a three goal advantage had Nkwana’s long-range effort from the left side and striker Mbongeni Masilela’s shot that hit the cross-bar and up-right, respectively, hit the back of the net instead.
UWC Coach Salie Adams made some changes in the second stanza, bringing in Nhlanhla Manana and Marchello Viglino for Ayanda Nkukwan and Lwando Ngqwemla, respectively. That paid off as his boys started to combine and took the game to the opposition team.
After one of those inter-plays, man of the match Thulani Mkosi found a space inside the box but his miscued shot fell for Manana who also miscalculated, but Josh Silent, the son of former Orlando Pirates star Brendon Silent, was on hand to slot the ball in to equalise.
Six minutes before the final whistle, UWC was handed an opportunity to clinch the game when a Tuks defender handled the ball in the area. Tapelo Sixishe’s spot kick was saved but the star midfielder sent a low cross from the resulting corner kick to find left back Keenan Davis whose powerful strike hit the roof of the net to secure the maximum three points for UWC.
In addition to the hard-fought draw away at Wits University last week, this week’s win will boost the confidence of the UWC team and give them something to build on ahead of their next game at home to Walter Sisulu University on 6 August 2015.